The Official Site of Author Joseph Heywood
JoeRoads.com: The Official Blog of Author Joe Heywood
25 Oct

Time Flying Here at the End

DAY 176, Saturday, October 25, 2014, ALBERTA, MI — Today was Tech’s volunteer day and students poured onto the Ford Campus and moved 30 full cords of heating wood from the campus grounds into the central shop area. Amazing what teamwork and a willing attitude can accomplish. Meanwhile I keep moving ahead with Buckular Dystrophy, now at somewhere between 70,000 and 90,000 words. Don’t know precisely because 30,00o words are typed and the rest is all handwritten so I have to guess. Won’t really know until I type it all in, which I’ll probably do in one big bolus rather than a chapter at a time, but we shall see. Point is, I’m deep into Act 3 of 5 and the story is rolling. I read new pages to Lon every morning over coffee. I’m up and writing 0400ish. She gets up around 7. I read and then I go back to writing, or to bed, depending on my energy. Working in the workshop with Dave as well and now have about half my stones glued into a huge chunk of 1 3/4 inch black walnut. Pure natural beauty, agates and and other stones and wood. Pictures of work in progress follow this, plus pic from our recent ramblings. Writing in morning, ramblings in the late morning, into afternoon. The schedule is loose, yet defined and it works nicely to be able to do all the things we want to do. Tomorrow will be little writing, a day of exploration on a four-wheeler into the hills, scouting for book locations and photos and hoping to bump a wolf, or moose, or bear along the way. We’ll be in some extremely prime country for such wild things, places few people have ever seen, or even know exist, the kinds of places that Grady Service and Limpy Allerdyce know inside and out. Should be a lot of fun. Will post photos if I think they’re up to snuff. Meanwhile here’s stuff from our past sorties and the woodworking. The project in process will be my last of this “summer” season. Yesterday in sixties, today in high 50s, tomorrow the same, these are our real days of Indian summer: Three, by definition, warm after the first hard freezes. We now have ice in the dog water every morning and earlier this week I stepped out with the dog at 0600 and a deer snorted at us from the wood line. Twice. We’ll miss this place and locale this summer, but not the snow they are soon to have in abundance. Enjoy the photos. Over.

The latest creation in wood. Note the CO badge in the center.  "I'm calling this, Hiding in the Rocks.

The latest creation in wood. Note the CO badge in the center. “I’m calling this, Hiding in the Rocks.

Tannin-stained trout water. Lots of oxygen in deep summer.

Tannin-stained trout water. Lots of oxygen in deep summer.

More trout water. One can't have enough of this, even visually.

More trout water. One can’t have enough of this, even visually.

Closeup of beauty often ignored. This is what Lonnie was really looking at, not the river.

Closeup of beauty often ignored. This is what Lonnie was really looking at, not the river.

She's liken her lichen.

She’s liken her lichen.

Rock River on humpback bridge on Old M-28

Rock River on humpback bridge on Old M-28

Old camp needs TLC

Old camp needs TLC

Rock River on humpback bridge on Old M-28

Rock River on humpback bridge on Old M-28

Trout water downstream.

Trout water downstream.

Trout water, upstream.

Trout water, upstream.

Male spruce grouse.

Male spruce grouse.

Pit stop.

Pit stop.

Shrooms for an artist's eye

Shrooms for an artist’s eye

Looking for moose, Drummond Lake Road, in the rain.

Looking for moose, Drummond Lake Road, in the rain.

When the bright colors go, the subtle colors reign and beauty stands firm.

When the bright colors go, the subtle colors reign and beauty stands firm.

Dead junco. Artists study such things to help them see what they are looking at.

Dead junco. Artists study such things to help them see what they are looking at.

Iron County courthouse, the most beautiful county seat in Michigan. Notice the  Crystal Falls Forest Park Trojan helmet on water tower on top the hill, where the team is often located in state high school football polls.

Iron County courthouse, the most beautiful county seat in Michigan. Notice the Crystal Falls Forest Park Trojan helmet on water tower on top the hill, where the team is often located in state high school football polls.

Generations Restaurant in Crystal Falls, where you can get beer, burgers AND bullets ,all in one stop. No joke., and the food is terrific.

Generations Restaurant in Crystal Falls, where you can get beer, burgers AND bullets ,all in one stop. No joke., and the food is terrific.

Lonnie and Sue Webster. No idea what caliber they're ordering.

Lonnie and Sue Webster. No idea what caliber they’re ordering.

Our favorite abandoned old homestead.

Our favorite abandoned old homestead.

Indian lake, iron County, Tammies smiling across the lake.

Indian lake, iron County, Tammies smiling across the lake.

These clouds signal a weather change.

These clouds signal a weather change.

Lonnie's cone flower print.

Lonnie’s cone flower print.

Lonnie's printing work -- an method she invented. This is called Night Lupines. and is now in the collection of Mike and Sue Webster.

Lonnie’s printing work — an method she invented. This is called Night Lupines. and is now in the collection of Mike and Sue Webster.

Heeding signs.

Heeding signs.

Looking north from Covington toward Lake Superior, which is a thousand or so feet lower than here.

Looking north from Covington toward Lake Superior, which is a thousand or so feet lower than here.

 

 

 

21 Oct

More Wood Art in Process

Days I write and BUCKULAR DYSTROPHY (WOODS COP #10) is growing steadily, approaching Act 3 of 5. At night I’ve been piddling with wood and agates again. Pix follow. More pix from ramblings later.

Nature's Bounty 9

Nature’s Bounty 9

Nature's Bounty 10

Nature’s Bounty 10

Nature's Bounty 11

Nature’s Bounty 11

18 Oct

Deerggerel Saturday Morning

Saturday morning, MSU vs Indiana later today, moving left to right on my radio dial with George Blaha and the “team.” This morning, I’m working on BUCKLAR DYSTROPHY, the tenth Woods Cop story, and  the whole focus on Grady Service and one very strange deer season where he runs into a series of people who are crazed by shooting big deer, most illegally. Hornophiles, if you will. In the thirties here, rain predicted, gray overcast, leaves coming off trees, perfect fall day.

Will start  the story off with a little deerggerel (think doggerel), and it organize it into five acts (rather than three parts) , a sop to my good pal Willy Boy Shakespeare, who is rumored (never proven) to have poached at least one deer in his spectacular life. I suspect he would have enjoyed these hinky-kinky extremist out-there outdoor folks.

 

Anthem of Secret Trophy Hunters

To tell a story such as this

Think how snakeys twist and hiss.

 

One must not shed a single deer

To shoot oneself a great big deer.

 

Do not be so namby pamby

And let yourself think of Bambi.

 

Count the point, inches and all

Your taxidermist can fix it for your wall.

 

Knocking own huge horned rack things

Need not be so very taxing.

 

Learn to hunt smarter with your brains

Not harder with your boots in snow and rain.

 

Get out there in the dark with a nice big light

Pretend you’re Army tough, and “own the night.”

 

Hope the game warden’s not around

When your trophy crashes to the ground.

 

Yes you’ve got a wall of mounts

They make animal lovers very and pout.

 

Tell them killing deer is in your blood,

Your dad’s, your uncle Frank’s and your best friend Bud.

 

He who kills the most big bucks

Can tell his pals that they all suck.

 

Hunting trophies is your LIFE,

It’s cost you a house, 3 kids, 2 dogs and a wife.

 

Best of all in the order of things

You do it alone, neither whisper nor sing.

 

You kill in the dark and all alone

And keep the work to yourself at home

 

The bottom line’s not bragging rights

Over that Let amateurs puff an fight.

 

For you bringing home those huge old deer

Is much, much better than a shot and a beer.

17 Oct

Mo Pix

Enjoy the natural beauty of Baraga County in the Land ATB (Above the Bridge):

Tamarack in gold.

Tamarack in gold.

Tammy too.

Tammy too.

Baraga Plains Road

Baraga Plains Road

BPR

BPR

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Mother nature clings to beauty even in the wake of a logging cutover.

Mother nature clings to beauty even in the wake of a logging cutover.

Here is where we scared four eagles of the ground.

Here is where we scared four eagles of the ground.

Stimac Mountain. We live at the base, across the road. Spectacular country in the way-back, but you don't get to see it from your car window. You have to get out and walk.

Stimac Mountain. We live at the base, across the road. Spectacular country in the way-back, but you don’t get to see it from your car window. You have to get out and walk.

Curves on Prison Camp Road

Curves on Prison Camp Road

One night after overcast all day the sun popped out and lit up the trees. One photo makes it look like a fire, but that's operator error, not the reality. Still, it was glorious to behold.

One night after overcast all day the sun popped out and lit up the trees. One photo makes it look like a fire, but that’s operator error, not the reality. Still, it was glorious to behold.

Fire in the sky, The Apocalypse Beckons!

Fire in the sky, The Apocalypse Beckons!

Truly random, nailed to a tree off a two-track.

Truly random, nailed to a tree off a two-track.

Old CO badge, dating to 1940s.

Old CO badge, dating to 1940s.

Old plexiglass sign used by Conservation Department personnel before the state actually issued equipment.

Old plexiglass sign used by Conservation Department personnel before the state actually issued equipment.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

17 Oct

Thinking About Re-Entry, BTB….

DAY 168, Friday, October 17, ALBERTA – Gas at $2.90/gal in Baraga yesterday at the Indian stations, about a quarter cheaper than stations in L’Anse. Be nice if it lasts, but it won’t, and so it goes. Two weeks left in our sojourn and then we’re back in Portage. Will be working with COs BTB this deer season and just this morning I heard federal meteorologists announcing that another polar vortex is unlikely this winter. Just last night we had a discussion around here. The “bad” winters of the past two years are the kinds of “normal” winters we had when I lived up here during high school, and again during my USAF hitch.  It will be what it will be. Yoopers have the right attitude about this: keep to your plans no matter the forecast and most of the time you can do what you want to do. Common sense at its best.

I continue to be perplexed by political debates and the pure venom people are spewing – on all sides. We are becoming a country of sad sacks with no sense of us.

Yesterday we came home on the Baraga Plains Road and kicked four eagles off the ground. Shaksper, of course, volunteered to investigate, but we pooped on his sniff sortie and  pressed on.

Making great progress   on the first draft of BUCKULAR DYSTROPHY and felt great until I looked for the 30,000 or so typed words I had and could not find them on my computer or on any flash drives. The ms. may be in the laptop. I hope so. This seems to happen with almost every book.

More importantly the weekly mail came today and with it an announcement by our doctor that he is retiring the first of the year and we need to find another  provider, — one who takes Medicare, which many don’t – and how does it work that you have to join Medicare, but nobody is required to service it. Oh well, will be what it will be. My doctor is Larry Don Troyer and he has been a blessing. He’s been in practice 39 years and we Heywoods have been on his patient rolls since the 1970. Will miss him beyond words, but we all get to retire if we’re lucky.  (Heard somewhere yesterday that writers get to retire one day before they die. That works for me.

What follows is a portfolio of pix  from the past couple of weeks.

 Enjoy. Over.

Spalted maple.

Spalted maple.

Safety in Numbers, Black Walnut

Safety in Numbers, Black Walnut

Volcanic art. Black Walnut

Volcanic art. Black Walnut

Earlier projects.. combos of natural wood and agates, etc.

Earlier projects.. combos of natural wood and agates, etc.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

13 Oct

Tiz the Season For Rutting

CO Dave Painter and PCO Mike Mansell, less than 10 miles from here, one week ago, middle of the day. The bull came within four feet of the driver’s window and circled the truck. First the animal came out of the bush in front of the truck. Eventually it went past and started for US 141 and the officers could hear vehicles coming, so Dave made his female moose-in-heat grunt (he’s never told me how he learned it) and the moose stopped and turned. When it started for the highway again, Mike blew the horn and stopped it. Then the traffic was past and the bull went on his way. This is how professionals handle moose contacts. Mansell is a rookie and this was his first moose, so he had a different view of the encounter than Dave. So it goes. You gotta love the Upper Peculiar! Over.

Then the animal circled the truck, finally pausing at PCO Mansell's door and window. (It left  breath fog on the glass, I am told)

Then the animal circled the truck, finally pausing at PCO Mansell’s door and window. (It left breath fog on the glass, I am told)

First the moose charged out of the popples to the front of the patrol truck.

First the moose charged out of the popples to the front of the patrol truck.

08 Oct

First Snow and All That

DAY 159, October 8, 2014, ALBERTA — 114 days between snows up here. Last one was May 16.  Had under-the-weather mutt last couple of weeks, with multiple trips back and forth to vet in Ishpeming, 48 miles each way. Thanks to my woodworking coach Dave Stimac for wood supplies, workshop tools, and directions. neither of us lost a digit — a major accomplishment. Working hard on 10the Woods Cop Mystery,  BUCKULAR DYSTROPHY, and some new essays for a second edition of COVERED WATERS: TEMPESTS OF A NOMADIC TROUTER.  First edition was in 2003 and the new edition will add some stuff in the history before that and come forward to now. Fun to work on. Lonne say CO Doug Hermanson earlier this week. He was hot on an investigation and no time for chitsychatsy. One of our great COs with impressive incisive  interviewing skills. Enjoy da pictures, eh. Over.

First snow in 114 days. Now THAT is a SHORT spring summer fall, less four months.

First snow in 114 days. Now THAT is a SHORT spring summer fall, less four months.

Lake Sixteen Road. We stopped to give Shaksper some exercise. Trees are stripping now, but some color remains stubbornly.

Lake Sixteen Road. We stopped to give Shaksper some exercise. Trees are stripping now, but some color remains stubbornly.

Lake Sixteen Road. Gotta keep an eye on what's behind youse.

Lake Sixteen Road. Gotta keep an eye on what’s behind youse.

Not quite a sundog, but definitely will get your attention.

Not quite a sundog, but definitely will get your attention.

My first woodworking project, Agates in Birdeye maple. Wall-art. "The UP's Bounty."

My first woodworking project, Agates in Birdeye maple. Wall-art. “The UP’s Bounty.”

Second wall art, Copper Bird on Copper Nest with Bird's Eye View on Birdeye Maple. Native copper and local bird-eye maple.

Second wall art, Copper Bird on Copper Nest with Bird’s Eye View on Birdeye Maple. Native copper and local bird-eye maple.

03 Oct

Some Notes from Local History

DAY 154, Friday, October 3, 2014, ALBERTA — All the following news bits are from the Saturday, September 30, 1899 L’Anse Sentinel.

The Comings and Goings of People:

Willie St. Ange left for Flint last week to resume his course in the school for the deaf and dumb. Willie is a bright little fellow and is progressing rapidly.

Simon Beauchamp, of Ishpeming, married, aged 28, accidentally shot himself while hunting Monday at Humboldt. He died in twenty minutes.

Clarence, 8-yar old son of Otto Lindquist, Calumet, lies at the Tamarack Hospital with both legs severed from his body. He, with older boys, let a flat car run down a crossing at an open switch. The care was derailed and young Lindquist fell under the wheels.

James Moak, an employee of the Boom Company, of Menominee, was killed in Florence Wisconsin, Monday. He was driving a supply wagon and was thrown off. The wheels passed over him, death resulting instantly.

Weather in Our Thoughts:

According to prediction we are booked for another long and severe winter. But then, people are becoming used to it.

The ground was covered with snow Friday morning.

The partridge season opens tomorrow, Oct. 1.

Over three inches of snow fell at the Summit yesterday.

Dogs chased and killed a deer near the head of the bay early Wednesday morning.

The States of Education and Marriage

Teachers last year in Michigan were paid, an average of $43 and women an average of $35. The total number of pupils enrolled in the state was 496,000.There was 403 private schools with 1,140 teachers and 45,000 pupils.

There were 20,138 marriages returned by the county clerks of Michigan to Secretary of State Stearns for the year 1898. This is the largest number ever  recorded for a single-year and represents a marriage rate of 16.9 per 1,000 population. The largest number of marriages took place in November, the smallest number in February. Favorite months were November, June and October.

And we Think Advertising is Better Now?

The woman who is lovely in face, form and temper will always have friends, but one who would be attractive must keep her health. If she is weak, sickly, and all run down, she will be nervous and irritable. If she has constipation or kidney trouble, her impure blood will cause pimples, blotches, skin eruptions and a wretched complexion. Electric Bitters is the best medication in the world to regulate stomach, liver, and kidneys to purify the blood. It gives strong nerves, bright eyes, smooth, velvety skin, rich complexion. It will make a good-looking, charming woman of a rundown invalid. Only 50 cents at (stores named in L’Anse and Baraga).

According the Chicago News, as reported in this edition of the L’Anse Sentinel, Nine of ten people think that when a man asks your opinion he is only looking for an opportunity to express his own.

“Life, English.”

Over.

02 Oct

Night Dances & Ghost Tails

DAY 153, Thursday, October 2, ALBERTA — Night before last we gave Shaksper a run in the “compound”  and along the way he ingested “something,” which later set him into a spatea of grass-eating, drooling and hiccuping and working to breathe, pacing like a thing possessed, unable to settle, wanting to lean on us  to tell us to “do somthing,” and yesterday morning we made an emergency run to the vet in Ishpeming (48 miles each way). They put him into temporary Night2 and $180 later  found where his throat had been badly irritated and was raw and we came home with some soft food for three days, and some meds. The boy remained in neverneverloopyland until this morning. Early this morning he was pacing again, and ,uncomfortable and we let him out and brought him back in, both of us up at 0245 when we spied some moderately pulsing orangish lights into  the woods about 75 yards away across open grassland from us, and then which two deer bounded into the open, a doe and a fawn, and they commenced to run around the grassy area in magnum high hinkydom, looking back in the direction they’d come from. Naturally my large binocs were in the truck so we had only small binocs to put on the light source and they were not strong enough. We both saw this and it lasted almost 30 minutes. We could see no light source that might have been bouncing off it and both of us had the same first impression, which is orange  with black upper rim — fire. But it’s drenched around here and no way that kind of flame could sustain in the woods. One deer eventually charged back into the woods, leaving a ghost tail hanging in our eyes,  and the other one ran  west toward the dorms and classrooms. This morning we went over and took a look. Nothing except woods. Very, very weird.

The more time one spends in the woods at night, the more odd phenomena one is likely accumulate. CO (now Sgt) Dan Bigger and I were on a shining patrol one night in Shiawassee County, running dark and suddenly several hundred yards ahead of us a gout of flame jumped up what appeared to be six or eight feet. Neither of us said a word on the first time. But it went twice more and on the third, we both said fire at the same time and went to investigate. We got out of the truck and pounded around but could find nothing, and next day went back in daylight, and still nothing. No idea what it was.

Life is strangely interesting. I’m certain there is a perfectly rational and accurate explanation for both light phenoms, and it irritates to neither know, or have the power to anaylze it properly. The more time I spend outdoors, the more ignorant I feel.  The point is to be alive and paying attention as best we can. As Edwin Way Teale tells us in AUTUMN ACROSS AMERICA (1956) while he looks down on a rock,   “How much of human life…had passed away while its insensate existence had gone on and on. yet, surely, better a single moment of awareness to enjoy the glory of the senses, a moment of knowing, of feeling, of living intensely, a moment to appreciate the sunshine and the dry smell of autrumn and the dust-born clouds above — better a thousand times even a swiftly fading, ephemeral moment of life than the epoch-long unconsciousness of the stone.”

We all face, as some of my ancestors might have put it, “A long look at the lid.”

Life is sweet and life is sweetly mysterious.” Over.

30 Sep

Productive Day on the Drawing Table

All color pencil on grocery bag.

Waiting for Breakup

Waiting for Breakup

Ospreyedelic

Ospreyedelic

Squirreledelic

Squirreledelic

Frogedelic

Frogedelic

Night Comes to the Forest

Night Comes to the Forest

Dave "Bird Eye" Stimac.

Dave “Bird Eye” Stimac.

Home   |   About   |   Blog   |   Tour   |   Links   |   Contact   |   Events   |   Forum

Copyright © 2008 Joseph Heywood. Design by C Marschke.